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All Abilities Awareness

Every year, The Accessibility Services Office and the McQuade Library partner to celebrate All Abilities Awareness in October. Each year looks different, but every event celebrates the diverse abilities that make Merrimack College a vibrant community.

Assistive Tech for All Abilities

The Curb-Cut Effect

by Angela Glover Blackwell

"Laws and programs designed to benefit vulnerable groups, such as the disabled or people of color, often end up benefiting all of society."

Many accommodations, from a cut in the curb to automatic doors, were created for a specific group of people and benefit everyone in sometimes unexpected ways.

Universal Design

The Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning can provide support around Universal Design for Learning.

Universal Design for Learning, or UDL, helps to minimize barriers and maximize learning for all students.

Tips from CETL on making courses more inclusive:

1.) Display content in a variety of ways.  Provide images, text, multimedia, and use your creative style to capture the learner’s attention.

2.) Accept a variety of formats from your learners over the duration of your course.  Give your students a variety of modalities to prove their command of the subject.  

3.) Fuel creativity in your students by allowing them to explore topics in a variety of ways.  Encouraging student exploration will add to their engagement.


Universal Design for Learning (UDL): A Teacher’s Guide

UDL in Action in College Online Courses

Universal Design in Higher Education: Promising Practices

Database Accessibility & Assistive Technology

Library databases come from a variety of domestic and international companies. EBSCO, Gale and ProQuest provide a substantial number of databases and these vendors are compliant with Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act and/or W3C WAI WCAG 2.0

Specific information about each vendor, as well as information regarding the assistive technology available in the library, is provided using the tabs to the left. 

Please contact a librarian if you need additional information or are experiencing difficulties accessing or using a database. 

DaVinci Pro

DaVinci Pro is a high performance desktop video magnifier (CCTV), featuring a Full HD Sony 1080p 3-in-1 camera and Full Page Text-to-Speech (OCR). View crystal clear images in vibrant color and contrast with the Davinci Pro’s Full HD 1080p Sony® camera. With a high resolution LCD screen you get the maximum picture detail for a clear, bold display. The DaVinci Pro also offers a large field of view allowing you to see more on the screen. DaVinci Pro’s full page OCR allows it to easily read your favorite article or book aloud in a male or female premium voice and in many different languages. When having the DaVinci Pro read to you aloud, you have the option to have it read a full page or select an area of the page to be read. Changing between live image and OCR is simply done with the push of one button. DaVinci Pro’s 3-in-1 Full HD camera allows you to see near, far or a mirror image making the DaVinci Pro the perfect electronic magnifier for any task. 

Where can I find adaptive technology?

There is an adaptive technology workstation located outside of the Research Center on the 2nd floor of the McQuade Library. This station is loaded with JAWS, ZoomText, Fusion, and Read & Write, and includes a Da Vinci Pro video magnifier/camera with text-to-speech capability.

All Abilities Access Grant

The Adaptive Technology workstation and software were purchased with grant funds from the Institute of Museum and Library Services and the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners.

All Abilities Access logo--text in circle surrounding book with icons of differing abilities Institute of Museum and Library Services logo

For questions or feedback contact the McQuade Library
Call us: 978-837-5177 | Text us:  978-228-2275 | Email us: